Armed with paint buckets and brushes, a group of employees of FirstCaribbean International Bank (FCIB), along with members of their families, this morning set out to beautify one of the island’s national treasures – the historic Queen’s Park – located in The City.
FCIB, in conjunction with the National Conservation Commission (NCC), has also launched an interpretive trail with factoids at entrances and specifically marked locations to educate visitors about the history of park.
The idea of was conceptualized by the bank’s Managing Director for Retail and Business Banking, Mark St Hill, who was moved by the passion and enthusiasm of an onsite ranger.
“It was just by happenstance that I was coming around here and I parked my car here a Sunday and a range . . . came around and asked me why I was here and I said that we’re looking for a project.
“Quite frankly the enthusiasm and pride that she showed and the excitement, I laughed and I said I had to convince all of my colleagues that this was what we should do,” said St Hill.
He said what really captured his interest was the ability of the ranger to reveal information about the park that other Barbadians may not be aware of.
“I conceptualized it by having dialogue with someone who is passionate about where they work and who is very proud about this park, and to me that was the acid test of whether this is something that we should do,” St. Hill said.
“It’s not what we the corporation think it good, but what the people of Barbados would think is good,” he added.
The refurbishment of Queen’s Park falls under FCIBC’s Adopt a Cause programme and it is being done in commemoration of the island’s 50th anniversary of independence. The bank has committed $80, 000 to the project.
The NCC’s Special Projects Officer, Ricardo Marshall, commended the bank for the initiative which he said will highlight Queen’s Park’s rich history.
“It [the project] encourages people to walk around and enjoy the park and whilst doing so, it’s good public education and they get additional knowledge,” he said, adding that it will encourage more school groups to visit the park.
“Here, now, would be a place to come and relax and take in a bit of the history,” he added.
(Pictures and story by Katrina King.)